Published: February 23, 2016

The value of membership

Value. Lately everyone is insisting on it, from value-based healthcare to value-added mobile data family plans. With so many options available to us, we’re right to insist on value, including in our professional association memberships.

PrintValue. Lately everyone is insisting on it, from value-based healthcare to value-added mobile data family plans. With so many options available to us, we’re right to insist on value, including in our professional association memberships.

The American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery provides value for our Members through professional and public education, research, and health policy and legislative advocacy. As a membership organization, the Academy exists solely for the benefit of our Members and advancement of the specialty—that is, we exist for you.

Last month’s print issue of the Bulletin included a brochure featuring the 2016 membership theme, “Value 4U: You care for patients. We care for YOU.” We all feel the uncertainty in today’s healthcare environment, and there is enormous value in being part of a unified association that speaks with a clear, loud voice on behalf of individual Members. With strong leadership, a solid strategic plan, and organized action, AAO-HNS is working for your success.

As Executive Vice President and CEO James C. Denneny III, MD, wrote in his December/January column, “There are a lot of unknowns across the spectrum of physician activities including quality measurement, reimbursement, continuing education and certification, and the overall configuration of the healthcare delivery system. The Academy has been very proactive in preparing for these potential changes and providing our Members the means to offer the best patient care in the future.” From the development of RegentSM, our clinical data registry, to pursuing opportunities for our Members to participate in Alternative Payment Models, the Academy and Foundation are working on your behalf so you can focus on what you do best—providing the best patient care.

The value of membership extends far beyond efforts to provide clarity in these uncertain times. As a Member, you have access to exclusive programs and resources designed just for you. Whether you practice general or subspecialty otolaryngology, and regardless of your practice setting, there are Academy resources just for you. Most Member benefits fall into one of four categories.

getinvolved100 Take an active role in leadership and philanthropic activities that benefit the specialty. Collaborate with other Members who share your commitment to making significant contributions that advance our mission. From participating in a one-time activity to serving in an elected position, there are many opportunities to make a difference.
  • Did you know? More than 1,000 Members are involved in Academy and Foundation committees, sections, and other select groups.
  • Did you know? The vast majority of committee meetings at the Annual Meeting are open to all Academy Members. Stop in and see what’s going on!
profdev100 The AAO-HNS Foundation is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing education for physicians. Increase your knowledge of current research and advances in medical practice, and gain greater competence in performing diagnostic and treatment measures to provide quality care.
  • Did you know? Members can earn more than 700 CME credits each year through more than 200 different education activities offered by the Foundation.
practicemgmt100 Take advantage of our resources to help you maintain an effective and efficient practice even while healthcare management continues to evolve. Our practical information and tools will help you provide quality care, make informed diagnoses and treatment decisions, and successfully navigate reimbursement issues.
  • Did you know? Practice management resources include:
    • funding to support research (Core Grants),
    • clinical practice guidelines,
    • CPT for ENTs,
    • clinical indicators,
    • position statements,
    • clinical consensus statements,
    • template appeal letters, and
    • advocacy statements.
infoexchange100 Staying up-to-date is crucial in today’s ever-changing healthcare landscape. Our publications and communication resources keep you in-the-know about the latest developments and offer opportunities to discuss important topics with your colleagues.
  • Did you know? Our online Member portal, ENTConnect, provides opportunities to connect and collaborate with your peers and engage in thought-provoking and private conversations.
  • Did you know? You can access the entire Bulletin and Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery journal, and listen to podcasts of selected journal articles, on your tablet or smartphone.

As you browse online at and view our publications throughout the year, you’ll notice the Value 4U icon indicating exclusive Member benefits that provide exceptional value. Let these serve as a reminder of the great choice you made when you joined the world’s largest organization representing specialists who treat the ear, nose, throat, and related structures of the head and neck.



More from March 2016 - Vol. 35, No. 02

New task forces focus on education
By Sonya Malekzadeh, MD, AAO-HNSF former Coordinator for Education The AAO-HNS/F has assembled four education task forces to address important issues concerning our Members and the profession. I am honored to be involved in many of these efforts and to serve as chair for two of these groups. The Simulation Task Force was formed in 2011 to define the current state of simulation, to investigate its role and future potential in otolaryngology-head and neck surgery, and to provide educational resources for AAO-HNS Members. Under the leadership of Ellen S. Deutsch, MD, the Simulation Task Force has accomplished: Initiation of Simulation Open Forums, at both the Combined Otolaryngology Spring Meetings (COSM) and the AAO-HNSF Annual Meeting & OTO EXPOSM, has brought together like-minded individuals to discuss interests, challenges, and opportunities in simulation. An active ENTConnect community engages simulation Members in ongoing collaboration and exploration. Launch of the SimTube Project, a national initiative for simulation-based educational research with the immediate goal of assessing the usefulness of a low-cost, low-tech simulator in learning myringotomy and tube placement, and the larger goal of establishing an infrastructure that could support multiprogram collaboration for more complex simulation-based educational research in the future. More than 60 U.S. residency programs now participate in the study. Numerous Annual Meeting Miniseminars highlighting current education efforts and advanced technology in simulation while also demonstrating the value of simulation in quality of care and systems improvement. Recognizing the expanding role of simulation in education, research, and quality, the task force has recently submitted an application to become a Foundation committee. This new designation will permit a formal and permanent structure for furthering Member opportunities and engagement. Dr. Deutsch and Gregory J. Wiet, MD, will chair the committee. The Comprehensive Curriculum Task Force stemmed from the 2013 Board of Directors Strategic Planning meeting where Academy leadership acknowledged the need for a core curriculum in otolaryngology. The Otolaryngology Comprehensive Curriculum will serve as a lifelong, continually expanding learning and assessment tool for otolaryngology professionals. The content and structure will meet the needs of students, residents, allied health colleagues, and all practicing physicians engaged in MOC and lifelong learning. The online format will cover the otolaryngology scope of knowledge, provided in various educational formats, to guide and address cognitive and technical skills. The “living” content will be kept current with frequent updates so users can be assured they are participating in a rich and growing educational program. The task force believes this to be an ideal opportunity to unite the specialties around education, reduce duplicative efforts across societies, and to provide a comprehensive education platform for our specialty. A working group comprised of society representatives is finalizing a list of topics and performing an inventory of all existing education content across the specialties. This information will inform the development of future education programming. The Intraoperative Nerve Monitoring Task Force, in existence since fall 2015, will address key issues relevant to facial nerve monitoring during otologic and neuro-otologic surgery. With representation from the American Neurotology Society (ANS) and the American Otological Society (AOS), the task force will focus on: Determining current practice in training and performance of nerve monitoring among Academy Members and Residency Program Directors. Developing education activities that will provide uniform and standardized training for otolaryngologists to safely and successfully perform the procedure. Clarifying the AAO-HNS/F perspective on intraoperative nerve monitoring within the specialty. AAO-HNS President Sujana S. Chandrasekhar, MD, proposed the latest group, Advanced Practice Professionals (APP) Education Task Force. With the growing presence of mid-level providers in otolaryngology practices, it is imperative that we provide our colleagues with proper education and training in our field. These efforts will improve their contributions to our practices and patients while also educating AAO-HNS Members on the benefits of including APPs in the profession. In collaboration with the APP societies, including SPAO-HNS, the task force will design educational programing and provide resources that will allow advanced practice providers and otolaryngologist-head and neck surgeons to work synergistically to improve patient care. “I have every confidence that this task force will put together a comprehensive ENT APP curriculum, utilizing many Academy resources. Establishing such an educational outline will really help our Members as they seek to incorporate APPs into their practices” said Dr. Chandrasekhar. Karen T. Pitman, MD, and Peter D. Costantino, MD, will serve as chairs of this new task force. Academy task force Members are working hard on topics critical to the Academy and the profession. “These education task forces really complement the work of the education committees by addressing new and innovative education opportunities for our Members,” said Richard V. Smith, MD, coordinator for Education. If you are interested in more information or contributing to any of these projects please email